Ugadi Navdurga युगादि नवदुर्गा
The word Ugadi is derived from the word Yuga adi (Yuga युग + Aadi आदि ). Yuga means the period or era and Aadi means the beginning. Uga उग also means commencement of germination. So this is the day when creation had started in the universe.
The universe is created from the Energy which pervades everywhere and had existed on its own all along throughout a timeless eternity in one or other form of the energy. Universe is nothing but energy. Since energy can neither be created nor be destroyed, it can safely be considered that Universe was never created, Universe will never die. Supreme Energy that is being recognized as the Super power or Supreme God/ Goddess. Adishakti आदि शक्ति is the name given as per Indian mythology. Adishakti created three types of forces in the form of Trinity of Gods. Trinity of Gods Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu are the forms of universal forces: Nuclear forces, Gravitational forces, and Electro-magnetic forces respectively.
Scientific theories proved that matter is no more than insubstantial fields of energy moving in a great emptiness (space) or ‘shunya’(शून्य) that pervades and surrounds everything. Thus all objects and living things have no substance except as bundle of energy. Thus different stars and planets like sun, moon, earth, etc. have been formed from the energy and sustained in the universe with the help of the forces like gravitational, nuclear, and electromagnetic forces. Gross elements (earth, water, air, fire and space) were created .
In Bhagawad Geeta it is given how everything in the universe goes back to its original nature after a predetermined period (kalpa कल्प ) and in the beginning of the next kalpa, the same comes out from that original nature again.
सर्वभूतानि कौन्तेय प्रकृतिं यान्ति मामिकाम् ।
कल्पक्षये पुनस्तानि कल्पादौ विसृजाम्यहम् ||
The day Kalpa had commenced known as Kalpaadi कल्पादि. With the interaction of different forces and planets, movements in gross elements started taking place. Sun and earth started giving movement to air and fire in the space; moon affected water on the earth, Thus all the five gross elements started playing their role for the creation.
Ugadi is assumed as the day the Creator (Lord Brahma ब्रम्ह) had commenced the creation. It is the beginning of an Era/Yuga in which currently we are living. To commemorate the commencement of Creation, this day is celebrated as Ugadi.
ASTRONOMICAL CYCLE AND YUGADI: The creator of the universe, began a series of wonderful creations, including that of and all the life forms that live in the earth. Yugadi is not only a beginning of Year according to the Hindu calendar, but also sets the new astronomical cycles into motion.
Sun and Earth’s Orbit: The sun, the source of light and life to every living being is a unifying force. Because the plane of the ecliptic (the plane of the Sun’s apparent path on the sky) is titled with respect to the celestial equator (the plane perpendicular to the earth’s spin axis), the respective hemispheres receive more direct or less direct sunlight at different times in the earth’s orbit around the Sun.
There is the role Earth’s orbit plays in the seasons, which we referred to above. The four seasons are determined by the fact that the Earth is tilted 23.5° on its vertical axis, which is referred to as “axial tilt.” This quirk in our orbit determines the solstices – the point in the orbit of maximum axial tilt toward or away from the Sun and the equinoxes, when the direction of the tilt and the direction to the Sun are perpendicular.
Solar Declination Angles for the Northern Hemisphere
Spring Equinox Mar. 21/22 = 0o
Summer Solstice Jun. 21/22 = +23.5o
Autumnal Equinox Sept. 21/22 = 0o
Winter Solstice Dec. 21/22 = -23.5o
When the Sun’s path crosses the equator, the length of the nights at latitudes +L° and -L° are of equal length. This is known as an equinox. There are two solstices and two equinoxes in a tropical year. An equinox is an astronomical event in which the plane of Earth’s equator passes through the centre of the Sun, which occurs twice each year, around 20 March and 23 September. After the summer solstice the Sun follows a lower and lower path through the sky each day until it reaches the point where it is in the sky for exactly 12 hours again. This is the Fall Equinox. After the Fall Equinox the Sun will continue to follow a lower and lower path through the sky and the days will grow shorter and shorter until it reaches its lowest path and then we are back at the Winter Solstice where we started.
Just like the Spring Equinox, the Sun will rise exactly east and set exactly west on this day and everyone will experience a 12 hour day. Spring equinox signifies that days are getting longer (after the darkness of winter), while autumn equinox represents the days becoming shorter as we prepare for winter ahead).
The days are longer around the summer solstice and shorter around the winter solstice.
The significance for Spring, is that daylight starts to increase, so the earth is about to tip over to more LIGHT, like an illuminating, sublime reminder that light is returning and always does, to earth. Therefore, the Spring equinox represents new light and life, new beginnings, seeds and paths.
This cycle of the earth around the sun spiritually symbolises light and darkness, life and death. So with summer (the summer solstice) we have the beginnings of new creation, and with the winter solstice the endings and death (metaphorical), of course, but also related to nature’s cycle.
TIME ELEMENTS: As the Earth orbits the Sun in 365 days (called a year), the Moon orbits the Earth.
Moon’s orbit and lunar months: The Moon’s orbit lasts 27.5 days, but because the Earth keeps moving, it takes the Moon two extra days, 29.5, to come back to the same place in our sky. This is called lunar month or Chandramas चन्द्र-मास. As per Chandramas the lunar month is denoted by the star on the full moon day. For example when the full moon day is in the star constellation of Chitraचित्रा that month is referred to as Chaitra Masa चैत्र-मास whose beginning day is celebrated as Ugadi.
Zodiac and constellation: After generations of observation or investigation, our great saintss (Sages) concluded that the “key lies in the heavens”. They divided the apparent sky into stellar zones for reference, like we divide land by fixing fences!
Zodiac or Rasi Chakraराशि-चक्र is a circular path with constellations as mile stones. These stellar zones are termed as constellations, stars, asterisms etc. Therefore at any point of time a constellation will rise in the east and another constellation which is 180 degrees away from it sets in the west. After keen observation and research our saints recorded the properties of these constellations and designed rituals in symmetry with them. Among the constellations, those rise and set in a particular period have strongest influence on our nature.
Astronomical status on Yugadi/ Nav Durga: On “Yugadi” day Sun sets his journey towards East and when he enters Mesha Rasiमेष-राशि (Aries) becomes very powerful. Astrologically Mesha Raasi (Aries) is the sign of exaltation for Sun. Aswin Maasआश्विन मास is when Full Moon day forms in Aswini star. During this month before sun rise on the horizon, we can visualise the constellation “Simha” सिंह-राशि (Leo) and later Kanya कन्या-राशि (Virgo) hence we have the image of “Durga Maa दुर्गा माँ“ as a “Woman sitting on Lion”. The same scene will repeat 6 months later but after sunset on the horizon in the month of Chaithra. So, there is a festival called “Vasanth Nava Durga” celebrated during the first 9 days of chaithra maas shukla pax.
Ugadi is basically a Hindu festival signifying the time element of the Universe which is celebrated as a new year day coinciding with the first day of Chaitra Masa शुक्ल–पक्ष Sukla Paksha, Prathama Thithi as per the Hindu Lunar Calendar
- वसंत (Spring season) is first among the six seasons, in a year spring वसंत, summer ग्रीष्म, rainy-season वर्षा, autumnशरद, winterहेमंत, extreme-winterशिशिर.
- मेष-राशि Mesha Raasi (Aries) is first among the zodiac signs,
- चैत्र-मास Chaitra Masam is first among the Lunar months,
- शुक्ल–पक्ष Sukla Paksha is first among the fortnights,
- प्रथमा Prathama is first day among the lunar days.
The day that coincides with the confluence of all the above mentioned is celebrated as Ugadi. It is an occasion that also signifies the end of an era and beginning of a new era. The spring (वसंत Vasantaa Ritu) has come in all its beauty and freshness. It is the season when nature presents her most glorious appearance. The advent of Spring means every tree is in bloom. with plants, shoots, and leaves coming to life and therefore, the day is believed to set things rolling for a fresh and successful new beginning.
It also marks the beginning of as the Hindu New Year (नूतन संवत्सर Nootana Samvatsara) Ugadi. Chandragupt Vikramaditya became king on this day 2074 years before. That is the current year is known as Vikrami samvat विक्रमी-संवत 2074. Also it is known as 5119 Yugabda युगाब्द. It means counting the number of years from the beginning of the कलियुग kaliyug 5119 years have passed.
Celebration of ‘Yugadi’ and ‘Nav Durga’: In ancient times rituals were performed at the moment of alignment and people would cleanse old energy out as well as in their homes, temples etc. So you see how reclaiming the sacred ways and mindset past brings us closer to both the Great Spirit as well as a closer truth. Balanced equilibrium as the ideal state for our lives. The celebrations and prayers (for Maa Durga) and worshiping girl children (Kanya कन्या) that follow fill people’s hearts with joy and contentment. Starting afresh with positive expectation is one of the key aspects of Ugadi. It is a time of renewal, new beginnings of life and growth blooming gloriously and ushering in a renewed sense of energy brought in to help you focus and move forward in new, fresh, positive ways.
There is also a health message involved in keeping fast and eating specific items these days. For example, Neem नीम is good for diabetes, skin diseases and acts as a blood purifier. It is called as Sarva roga nivarini सर्व-रोग निवारनी. Even today usage of neem leaves is prevalent in rural areas whenever anyone is infected with small pox/chicken pox. Jaggery helps in increasing the haemoglobin content of blood that helps in iron deficiency, Tamarind helps in removing excess of kaphaकफ, vataवात , and pittaपित्त , raw Mango works in throat related problems and enhances the appetite, Chillies removes kapha and vata, pepper helps in cold and works in throat related problems.
Thus Yugadi and Nav Durga reminds that season is going to change. The rituals are performed to give indication for change of life-style according to the change of season in order to ensure disease free healthy life.